Sunday, November 14, 2010

the end of my twenties...

today marks the end of my twenties. I can hardly believe that in less than 2 hours, I will be officially 30. I was talking to one of my precious friends the other day- and I was saying that it's not that I mind turning 30- it's more that I thought my life would look so different by 30. But I am grateful for my life and all of the things I've accomplished in the last thirty years. There are some things that are a part of my life that make me very happy and proud. some of those are:

1. being a teacher- like I've been dreaming of since I was in 4th grade.
2. traveling overseas- to Romania and Asia as a missionary- and living in China
3. maintaining meaningful friendships for a long time- people from high school and college- wouldn't trade them for anything
4. continuing to sing and perform- not always how I planned, but I've had the chance to sing with some of the most talented people I know
5. leading a small group for 7 years- continuing to pour into those girls now that they're in college

There are a lot of other things, but these are the things in the front of my mind tonight.

My life isn't what I planned: it's better.

Monday, November 8, 2010

If it's not too much, it's not enough.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

A tree does not stop being a tree when it loses its leaves.
A girl does not stop being a girl when she takes her makeup off.
God does not cease being good when the circumstances in our life become dim.

Wisdom and blessing from Andy Merrick.

Sunday, October 24, 2010


Jonathan and I met about 10 years ago. I was still in college, and he was coming home from an internship with Focus on the Family. I had known his name for years because my entire church has been praying for him. When Jon was in middle school, he was diagnosed with nephritis lupus- which is lupus that attacks your kidneys. He went through dialysis and eventually had a kidney transplant when he was 18.

In the past few years, he's still had some health issues, but for the most part, it's been an uneventful decade of kidney health.

Until this fall.

The lupus has flared back up. It's attacking the healthy kidney. He's currently in the process of getting 3 rounds of chemo to stop the lupus- and get his kidneys back to normal function.

A few weeks ago, his white blood cell count was dangerously low- too low to give him chemo- so he had to hang out in the hospital for about 10 days, so I went to visit him one day. We had a great time just being able to visit and catch up- he lives in Texas, so we don't see each other very often anyway.
While we were talking, the reoccurring theme was "God's glory: no matter what". And to hear Jonathan say this over and over made me think about my own life. I tend to base my desire for God's glory on my circumstances, but over and over in the last few weeks, I have prayed that God be glorified in every situation- no matter what. No matter how I feel about it. No matter if I like the outcome. No matter if Jonathan's body is healed. No matter what.

I'm still in the plac where it's not always true- sometimes it's just my prayer. But, that is my aim.
God, your glory. No matter what.

Monday, September 27, 2010

winner winner chicken dinner

Or, in my case, new towel wrap!

As per usual, I entered a blog contest a few weeks ago for a towel wrap from the Preppy Pink Crocodile. I've been a reader for a while, but I go through phases of being interactive. And I have NOT been interactive lately.


I WON!! I am so excited!Of course, I got my KCS monogram- and it's going to be some combo of pink and green (naturally).

I can't wait!! So excited!!

Sunday, September 26, 2010


Went to my cousin's wedding this weekend. Wedding started at 430. Alabama game kicked off at 330. (he's from NorthCarolina- he doesn't get it) MAJOR problem.

I love my cousin.
I love Alabama.
So, my family and I watched it on iPhones. has a GREAT app that you can watch the live feed from your phone. We killed two batteries, and drained about half of the 3rd.

now, THAT is devotion.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

baby Catherine

Katie and Donnie are friends of mine from highschool- and they ended up getting married after college. A few years ago they had a baby girl named Catherine.

While Katie was pregnant, Catherine was diagnosed with a severe defect called congenital diaphragmatic hernia. More or less, her diaphragm is formed incorrectly which pushed her organs too far up in her body. This caused major deformities in her organs- as shown below.

So, when Catherine was born, Katie and Donnie weren't sure about her life expectancy or survival. The first few months were incredibly precarious. When she was born, she went through multiple surgeries- and a lot of unknown.

During the course of her pregnancy, Katie started a blog: Letters to Catherine. It's amazing. It documents their fears and joys- Catherine's setbacks and victories.

Catherine is two.
She is a miracle.

You should go read Katie's blog. It'll bless you beyond words. I am grateful for my friendship with Katie and Donnie- but knowing the story of Catherine has changed my life. I met Catherine for the first time this summer at a mutual friend's wedding. She is just as precious in real life as she is in Katie's pictures and stories.

Go read Letters to Catherine. You will NOT be disappointed.

** I have more pics of Catherine (and Donnie and Katie) but blogger is being difficult...

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

such a baller

This made me laugh out loud- I've watched it about 45 times.

"I saw this idiot coming right at me. I figured he'd be better off getting tripped than tased" -Matt Diaz

Thursday, June 3, 2010

memorial day 2010

My friends and I have been going to the beach over Memorial Day weekend since I was a freshman in college. It's not always been the same group of friends, but it's one of my favorite trips of the year.
This year was no exception.

In summary:

All in all, it was amazing.
I would go back right now if I could.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

culty churches

I've never been a part of a "cult-y" church. I use the term "cult-y" because I don't know enough about that type of thing to feel comfortable labeling something a straight-up cult. And. When I think of cults, I think of David Koresh or Heaven's Gates- and things I know about "cult-y" churches doesn't sound like those extreme examples. I have some friends and family that have been a part of churches like these, and it always make me think critically of church. (When I say church here, I don't mean "the body of believers" as a whole, but rather individual institutions.)

My parents were members of a church when I was really little- like an infant, I don't remember it. And it was a little cult-y. The preacher was having an affair, and everyone knew, but no one was brave enough to challenge him and his authority. When my parents decided to leave, the church acted as if they were going to be sent to Hell if they didn't go to church there. VERY weird.

My friend Scott went to a church here in Metro Atlanta, and it was DEF a little cult-y. The church forced Scott to have an accountability partner with an assigned man from the church. I mean, I'm all for accountability partners, but if it's supposed to be meaningful and USEFUL, then it has to be someone that YOU choose to share your struggles and victories with. NOT someone your church ASSIGNS to you. Much like my parents, when he tried to leave, the church acted as if he was destined for Hell.

I read Elizabeth Esther's blog, and she recently did a series of posts about a "cult-y" church. It was more about what it's like to leave a recover from being a part of that type of church. I have learned from her that being a part of a church like that can have long-term effects on your thought processes and beliefs. Usually the effects aren't things you are even aware of until they're challenged by your life's experiences- or someone looking at you and saying, "WHAT?".

There are always some groups and churches that make me wary. I don't know they're doctrine or anything, but I am always anxious when someone tells me that something MUST be a certain way. Short of commands from scripture, I don't know about directives from people that they claim can make or break your relationship with God.

Have you ever been a part of a cult-y group or church? What made it so? How did you leave? Do you still notice the ramifications of that group?

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

The Outsiders

As I mentioned before, The Outsiders is one of my favorite books of all time. I read it with my students every year- and they always love it. Mainly because it's amazing. And party bc I'm an awesome teacher. :)

After we read the book, I always show them the movie.

And the kids always get a kick out of the fact that it includes Tom Cruise, Patrick Swayze, Emilio Estevez, Matt Dillon, Rob Lowe, and Ralph Machio-the-guy-from-Karate-Kid. The guy that played the main character Ponyboy, C. Thomas Howell, has gone on to do other things, but he is-by far- the least famous of the cast.

But, my favorite thing is that all of my girls fall in love with Rob Lowe. He plays the roll of Soda Pop Curtis, and he is precious. Since Rob Lowe is older than my students, most of them have never seen him in movies and stuff.
But, after watching this movie- especially the scene where he's looking for his clothes- my girls all love him.

They're welcome.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Favorite Books

Two weeks in a row of Show Us Your Life?? You've never been so lucky! But it's about favorite books! So you know that I'm ALL about it!

These aren't in any particular order, but these are my all time favorite books. I could read them over and over again. In fact, I HAVE read them over and over again.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

pretend friends

I like to pretend that I know Casey Darnell. I know people who know him. I hear him lead worship at Buckhead Church and Big Stuf. I follow him on Twitter. I listen to his music. This is obviously enough to allow myself to pretend that we're friends.


Well, I choose yes.
So, now I will tell you to go buy my friend Casey Darnell's new EP- out today on iTunes!
Honestly, after being led in worship by Casey for so long now, I honestly feel like I know him. He's an amazing man after God's heart- and you are NOT going to be sad you bought this!

Monday, May 10, 2010

How a bass player ranks drummers:

My dad (who makes me laugh every day) wrote this months ago. It his hilarious. Especially if you've ever been a part of a band. My dad is a bass guitar player, and he's been playing professionally since he was 14. I'm just a singer, but it's still funny.

How a bass player ranks drummers:
1. Do they show up?
2. Do they have most of their gear?
3. Are they sober enough to put what gear they have together?
4. In time for the show?... See More
5. Without falling into the kit?
6. Can they count the song off?
7. In the proper time signature?
8. Does the pattern they play have any relation to the song?
9. Can they play a one-bar fill that actually lasts for four beats, not five?
10. Having played a five-beat fill, do they recognize their error?
11. Having recognized it, can they fix it?
12. Without having to stop?
13. During the break, do they hit on your girlfriend?
14. Does she respond?
15. Do they come back? (Note: this may not necessarily be a good thing.)
16. Finally, at the end of the gig, do they hang around to pack up gear?
17. If not, do they pack up their own gear before leaving?
18. If not, does your girl friend leave with them?
19. If so, do they ask if they can borrow your car?
20. If so, do they ask for $20 for gas?

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Mother's Day

Only lately have I been able to admit that I feel like this.

Friday, May 7, 2010

baby names

My friend Kelly whoisnotreallymyfriendbutIreadherblogsoIfeellikewearefriends has a series called "Show Us Your Life" where she writes something, and invites you to write the same and then link back to her blog. It's pretty fun, but I usually just read and don't participate.

But today I am joining in because it's all about baby names. And I love baby names. I've been doodling them on notebooks, church bulletins, and napkins since I was in college. Go check out Kelly's, but these are mine...

Katharine Elizabeth (Katy Beth)
My first name is Katharine (yes, with an "a" in the middle- just like my mom and her namesake, Katine). And that's my cousin's name. And another cousin is Elizabeth. And my bff Maranda's middle name is Elizabeth. And I love double names. Like my sister, AnneTaylor. And I would spell Katy with a "-y" because that's how my best friend spells her name. I love that this little girl name has so much meaning behind it.

Austin Hope
When I was in the 7th grade, I knew a girl named Austin- and she was so cool. I def wanted to be like her. As I got older and actually thought about baby names, this immediately came to mind because it's my dad's middle name. I would love to use it for a baby name. THEN. Even cooler, my mom's middle name is Hope. My grandparents weren't being all sweet/spiritual- that's my grandmother's maiden name. I'm pretty sure she'd just go by "Austin", but the potential for another double name is def there.

Jake Smith
Honestly, I just love the name Jake. But I don't love Jacob/Jakob. So I would just name my baby boy Jake. And my last name is Smith, and I would love to use that as a middle name someday. Of course this will only work with certain last names, but I'm not there yet!

Cooper/Miller Ellis
Once again, I just love the name Cooper. Mainly because I love the nickname "Coop". There's nothing deep there. And I love the name Miller. I'm a little embarassed to even admit why I like the name, but here goes: I once read an article about Matthew McConaughey's brother naming his son "Miller Lyte". Well, that is the trashiest thing I've ever heard, but it made me LOVE the name Miller! And Ellis is my mom's maiden name, and I think it's a perfect middle name!

Well, that's it from me.
Keep in mind that I have no boyfriend, spouse, or children- so this may be a touch premature, but it's all good!

Friday, March 26, 2010


I've always known that the Bible calls us to confess our sins, but if I'm being honest, I have rarely done this. Well, that's not true, I do confess. But, I'm more likely to confess things like "I'm not reading the Bible enough".... or "I am too selfish"... or "I've fooled around with guys more than I should have".

And nothing is wrong with these confessions.

Only that I'm not confessing anything. I'm being vague or choosing to only confess the things that aren't that bad.

But lately, that's been changing for me.

A few weeks ago at Sublime, I started talking to a group of girls- and before I even realized it, I confessed one of my darkest sins. I mean, it's a biggie. And before that moment, no one knew. I mean, no one (who would hold me accountable spiritually) knew. I had managed to only let people know who wouldn't consider the spiritual ramifications of my choices. I had never told anyone that would want to know how God felt about it.

The sin that I confessed had been worked out with God. He and I had already dealt with it, but I had never invited anyone else into that process.

The coolest thing about that moment with those senior girls is that God totally used my sin to teach them something big. My honesty in that moment helped them understand the spiritual ramifications of sin like mine. He used my confession to bring glory to Himself. Only God can take the bad and work it together for his good- and ultimately, my good.

What I learned in that moment is that confessing my sin doesn't result in condemnation (assuming you're confessing to Godly people). In fact, it was the opposite. The girls were able to hear my mistakes and be so relieved to know that I'm a "real" sinner too. I recently heard someone explain the difference between conviction (from the holy spirit) and condemnation (from people). Condemnation says that YOU are something bad. Conviction says you DID something bad. A small difference but a huge difference.

Confessing my sin doesn't mean that I can no longer be influential. In fact, more of the opposite. He used my confession to make a bigger impact on those girls than I ever could have if I had just been quoting scripture or passing on information. My friend Denise is a Christian author and speaker- and a few years ago, her marriage tragically ended in divorce. She decided to take a year off from writing and speaking to kinda collect her thoughts, but then came back a year later to speak at a church. Then God called her to speak about marriage. Of course, she was SO annoyed that God would do such a thing- she had just gotten divorced! And, in His small and mighty way, he asked her if she still believed in marriage. And of course, she did! And God told her, your mistakes do not have baring on my truths. My truth is STILL truth no matter how many times you mess it up. When Denise shared this with me, I thought I understood. But, now that I have lived- and confessed- I understand it to a level that I never thought possible. God's truth is STILL truth- no matter how badly I have blown it.

Once I confessed the one time, it made me know that I could do it again. The next night I sat down with one of my best friends- and confessed a slew of sins that needed confessing. And once again, there was no condemnation and I didn't lose my ability to be influential.

I'm not saying that I'm gonna start telling everyone all of my mistakes, but for the first time REALLY in my life, I truly understand the healing that James is talking about when he says, "Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed." (James 5:16).

God is a healer in so many ways, but right now, for me, he's healing me through my own obedience to confess.

Monday, March 22, 2010


These are my favorite things right now:

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

8 foods

According to Eat This Not That, these are the 8 foods you should every day....
  1. spinach
  2. yogurt
  3. tomatoes
  4. carrots
  5. blueberries
  6. black beans
  7. walnuts
  8. oats
Only one small problem, I don't like 1, 7, or 8 (unless it's in cookies or instant-sugar-filled oatmeal).

But an interesting thought nonetheless.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

this is one of my kid's legit school picture. he is hilarious. if this doesn't make you laugh, you could never survive in middle school.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010


In the last 24 hours, I:
1. found out that my car (which I wrecked Friday) is totaled.
2. lost my Granddaddy Billy. (Not my real grandfather, but very close.)
3. have been subpoena-ed to testify from when I got robbed last summer.

I am overwhelmed.

Thursday, March 4, 2010


A few weeks ago, my facebook status said something along the lines of, "When people say the education system is broken, it hurts my feelings."

See, I'm an educator. And it hurts my feelings.

I am under no false illusions about the education system. I do not think it's perfect. In fact, I think there are many flaws, and there is no "quick fix" from any one source to fix those flaws. I'm not trying to say that we don't need to improve education, but attacks on the system as a whole feels personal to me.

And you can tell that it's not, but it feels like it is.

I know this guy. I won't call him a friend because he's not. We are not friends. We know each other.

In all the years I've known him, he's never had one decent conversation with me. He only speaks to me to make snarky comments about Alabama football.

But, he decided to further our relationship and add "attacking my profession" to his list of conversation topics.

He felt the need to comment on my fb status- to let me know that it is actually broken, but that's it not a personal attack on me. I say my peace, but I try to let it go. But it made me mad. I mean, I JUST SAID that it hurts my feelings! What do you not understand????


He messages me on fb chat. (Once again- we DO NOT talk. EVER.) Just so he can bring it up again. UGH.

It made me so mad that I just closed my whole computer.

Deep breaths. Cleansing breaths. Trying to get over it.

I'm at church last night. And he has the AUDACITY to come up to me- SEEK ME OUT- to bring it up AGAIN. In the meanest way possible, I told him that I would not have that conversation with him. Not now, not ever.

In thinking about it today, I've realized that it bothers me on multiple levels:
  • If this convo had been with one of my friends,then I wouldn't be as mad. But the fact that he doesn't have anything positive to say to me EVER is frustrating. Other people at my church single me out to encourage me on a regular basis, and he doesn't even speak to me outside of snarky remarks about Alabama football and to criticize my profession. just more than I can handle.
  • The fact that the VERY FIRST time he said something, it was on a status that explain that this topic HURTS MY FEELINGS. So it's not like he didn't know that it was going to hurt my feelings. He knew. But being right was more important to him than my feelings.
And that's the biggest part.
It was more important to be right than to consider how I felt about it.
And THAT is why I'm annoyed.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Faking It

Did you read Post Secret yesterday? If so, you saw this picture:

Obviously, I immediately googled it. You can read it yourself here:

I had a bunch of Mormon friends in high school, and I knew a few people convert to Mormonism so they could get married. This is not something I'd ever even consider, so it was always fascinating to me that people would actually change their entire belief system for marriage. I guess my personal beliefs are too strong for this to be an option.

But, it made me think- How many people who change religions for a spouse are actually only just "faking it"?

Friday, February 19, 2010

Are you looking for me?
when I'm not there
when I've been m-i-a
when there's an empty stare

Are you looking for me?
when we sit and talk
when pass real quick
when no one slows their walk

Are you looking for me?
when the world spins fast
when you're just too busy
when much time has passed

Are you looking for me?
when you approach the throne
when you love out loud
when I feel alone

Are you looking for me?
because all I really want
is someone to look for me

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Life Changing Announcement

This is the greatest lipstick I have ever used in my whole life.

It's Revlon ColorStay Overtime Lipcolor.
It claims to last for 18 hours, and I will call a penalty flag on that.
HOW-thefreak-EVER. It lasts about 12 hours. Which is RIDIC.
You need to try some. It's everywhere. I have 2 colors. Love love love.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010


Today was my friend Shannon's first day back at work after being out for the past few months. You may remember me writing about him before- last spring, he and his wife lost their baby shortly before their due date.

We raised money as staff so that he could stay out for the remainder of the school year, but he came back at the start of this year.

However, the past few months, he's been out of work. Mainly dealing with some major emotional/depression issues.

And it's gotten me thinking. About my own coping. About how people cope in general.

From when I was a sophomore in high school to my junior year in college, I buried 7 friends. Not like grown up, old people. But friends. People my age. All car accidents. But. It was with the last one in 2001- my friend Jennifer was killed in a head-on collision on her way back to Clemson- and I kinda lost it. I was suddenly unable to cope with my own loss and grief. I ended up leaving my school- and moving back home, started seeing a therapist, and taking anti-depression meds. It was a dark time in my life, but God was good.


Isn't it weird how some people go through one thing and reach that breaking point? And some people go through a series of bad things- and THEN reach that point? And some people seem to never have that point- they're always able to be tough.

Why is that?
What causes it all?
I don't get it.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Need More to Read??

Autocomplete Me

If you only had 22 words, could you still express yourself??
22 Words

He talks in his sleep. His wife blogs what he says. Hilarity ensues.
Sleep Talkin Man

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Princess Diana

When I went to Philadelphia in November for the NCTE conference, I stayed a few extra days to sight-see and be touristy in Philly. I had a great time seeing everything- loved all of the "Founding Fathers" and Constitution stuff. I'm a history nerd- times a million.

Almost by accident, I went to the Princess Diana Exhibit. It was in the same building as the Constitution exhibit, and tickets were cheaper if you bought for both exhibits.A short background of me: I love Princess Diana. I remember where I was when she died. (I'm too young to remember her wedding.) I've read her biographies. I bought the magazines about her.

So, when I had the chance to see this exhibit, I was way excited, even though I wasn't sure what it was going to contain.

It was better than I could have ever imagined.
It was pictures, letters, videos, mementos, scrapbooks, and so much more. There was a whole room devoted to her fashion- and had numerous dresses she wore on display. There was a room devoted to her childhood, her courtship with Prince Charles, her wedding, divorce, philanthropy, and- of course- her death.

Here's my embarrassing confession.

I cried.

Kinda teared up early on, but by the time I got to the room about her death/funeral, I was bawling. Tears running down my cheeks and sinus situation creeping to a very unattractive level.

It was bad- to the point that a woman stopped me to ask if I was ok.


When I got home, I told my mom about my trip- and told her that we'd have to go if it ever came to Atlanta.

Well, glory in the day- it's here. At the Atlanta Civic Center. Now until June.

You have to go. I'm sorry. You get no choice. It's amazing.
If you're not in Atlanta, I highly recommend you figure out when it's coming to a town near you.

Try to not cry.
Or take some tissues.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010


For the past few years, I have gotten to know Carlos Whittaker.

Only that he doesn't know me from Adam's cat (whoever that is...)- because I know him from his blog and from twitter.

It's weird how much I feel like I know him- from reading his heart, being challenged by his thoughts, and laughing at his witty observations. He used to be on staff at Buckhead Church, but has recently left because God was ready for him to do something new.

Yesterday, he released his EP on iTunes.
If you haven't bought it, you're way behind- it's already #1 on the Christian chart and in the top 50 for all of iTunes.

um. check it out. now.
only $2 for 3 songs-and ONE SONG IS FREE!
the rest will be released in the spring.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

the sexiest thing EVER.

global warming? pfffff

From my car this morning.
Al Gore has a lot of explaining to do.

Monday, January 4, 2010

a fresh perspective

Headed back to school tomorrow. Worked today, but we didn't have students today.

I was venting about going back tomorrow because I didn't feel super motivated to go back. I am excited about the year, but I would love a few more days to get back into the swing of things.

I said as much on twitter the other day, and my friend Annie replied to me (out of love) and reminded me that I teach kids that were miserable for the entire two weeks they were home.

I always forget this because my life was/is nothing like that. I always loved breaks with my family, but so many kids hate the vacation because it's just full of reminders that their life isn't what they had hoped. It's just a reminder of divorced parents, hateful siblings, and neglecting family.

So, tomorrow I'm going back. With a new perspective. That I get to be love and excitement and caring and commitment to my students. I am looking forward to it!

Sunday, January 3, 2010


The 2010 Passion Conference is in Atlanta this weekend. Hearing about it and knowing a lot of people that are attending has made me feel incredibly old.

When I was in college, I was an active part of the "Passion Movement", 722, 268 Generation,One Day, and anything else that I could get into that had to do with Jesus.

I went to 4 stops on the Passion tour- Atlanta, Athens, Rome, and Augusta.
I was in Shelby Farms for One Day.
We drove 2 hours on a regular basis on Tuesday nights to go to 722 in Alpharetta.
I owned every CD put out by Passion.

It was an amazing time of my life. I wouldn't trade it for anything.

I know a lot of people from my church who still fall in the 18-25 age bracket who are at the conference this weekend. Reading their tweets, status updates, and blog posts has been so comforting and made me reminisce a lot.

There was so much for me and my age bracket then. But this has also highlighted a fact in my life.

Unless you are married, there is very little "for you" when your 29.

Never knew it. Never cared.
And it's not like I'm mad or anything, it's just that I'm just now noticing it.


Yes, LORD, walking in the way of your laws,
we wait for you;
your name and renown
are the desire of our hearts.